Acute prostatitis is a bacterial infection characterised by inflammation of the prostate. It is the least common form of prostatitis, a common urological condition among men.
Acute prostatitis is a bacterial infection of the prostate gland, a walnut-shaped organ located at the base of the bladder, in front of the rectum.
The factors that increase the prostatitis risk are some medical conditions such as urinary tract infections (UTIs), sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and urethritis. Some of the other risk factors include age (men over the age of 50), history of prostatitis, psychological stress, dehydration (not drinking enough fluids), genetics, pelvic injuries and
orchitis (inflammation of the testicles).
The reason behind acute prostatitis is bacteria (such as proteus, klebsiella and E. coli) that results in urinary tract infections (UTI) and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). It travels to the prostate through blood, or enters the prostate during or after a procedure such as a biopsy. The condition can be caused by infections in other parts of the male genitourinary tract.
Epididymitis (inflammation of the epididymis), urethritis (inflammation of the urethra), an injury to the perineum, urinary catheters or cystoscopy are bladder outlet obstruction and are among other causes of acute prostatitis.
Acute prostatitis is a less common condition, but the symptoms are usually severe. Those with the condition have an acute urinary tract infection, i.e., they need to urinate very often and may experience pain in the pelvis and genital area. Pain may spread to the surrounding areas of male genitalia and passing stools (faeces) may feel painful.
Fever, chills, nausea, vomiting and burning while urination are the symptoms that may be accompanied. If left untreated, there is a risk of bladder infections, abscesses in the prostate or, in extreme cases, completely blocked urine flow. Moreover, the condition may cause low blood pressure.
The medical condition is usually treated with intravenous antibiotics, pain relievers and fluids. It takes four to six weeks to treat acute prostatitis with antibiotics. Your doctor may continue the medications beyond in case of recurrent episodes. The type of antibiotic prescribed depends on the bacteria that cause prostatitis. Your doctor may prescribe alpha-blockers to help relax bladder muscles and decrease urinary discomfort. Pain relievers may also be prescribed to ease the discomfort.
Besides treatment, health experts suggest certain lifestyle changes and precautions to manage the condition better. Experts advise to avoid bicycling, abstain from alcohol, caffeine, and foods that are spicy and acidic. You need to keep a watch over foods that can irritate the bladder, such as citrus foods or caffeinated drinks. Sitting on a soft cushion or pillow and warm baths can ease pain at home.
Acute prostatitis is a treatable condition with a good prognosis. Antibiotics and lifestyle adjustments can help treat the condition. In a few cases, it may recur and become chronic prostatitis. In such cases, you need to maintain a responsive communication with your health care provider.
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